Design | Star Refrigeration Operations


Our team of exceptionally knowledgeable and experienced engineers are dedicated to providing exactly what has been promised, on time and in budget, using the best technology available to deliver quality temperature solutions for our customers.

Star has designed and installed solutions for customers' new installations to replace old or inefficient equipment, to increase plant capacity, to future proof existing plants with sustainable solutions, and to become compliant with F-Gas regulations.

Our refrigeration system designs are proven to offer excellent efficiency ratings as well as energy and CO2 savings. They follow customer’s site specifications thoroughly, and fully adhere to technical specifications and H&S regulations.

Star's design function is compliant with the ISO 9000 quality standard and covered by the highest PED certification module, H1. Star design systems in conjunction with various compressor manufacturers, allowing us flexibility to use the optimum compressors for every project. We design all types of industrial refrigeration equipment and combine this with purchased components to ensure we provide a good solution for our customer.

We provide efficient, high quality refrigeration plant and heat pumps with a long life and we have a rigorous design process which is well proven to provide effective solutions for a wide variety of projects. Star are well known for technical innovation and the design team have vast experience applying solutions developed in house and purchased from other innovative companies to give cost effective solutions for our customers, particularly in the application of natural refrigerants such as ammonia and carbon dioxide.

All of our design engineers have been trained in house and we have a strong commitment to developing our staff and the innovation of our products, particularly to improve the efficiency of refrigeration plant. Our design team currently includes four chartered engineers and we are active members of several engineering institutes. Star has up-to-date AutoCAD and Inventor 3D drawing / design packages, along with dedicated draughtspersons to provide accurate and compatible drawings to ensure integration with other contractors. Many long standing blue chip customers appreciate the benefits Star's design expertise brings to the smooth running of their projects.


Angus Gillies

Technical Director

Related Case Studies

  • Brakes reduces ammonia refrigeration charge by 96% with Star’s Azanefreezer

    A leading distribution company has recently upgraded its existing freezer plant system to the modular air-cooled, low charge ammonia Azanefreezer. Located in Bishop's Stortford, Brakes supplies the UK food service industry with a comprehensive range of fresh, grocery, frozen and non-food products.

    The existing 40 year old ammonia refrigeration system had come to the end of its operational life and replacement equipment was required. The traditional approach would have been to replace with a pumped circulation ammonia system but the customer wanted to improve operating efficiency and reduce refrigerant charge. Star was invited to propose an upgrade solution focusing on these two key criteria.

    The solution was to install Star’s AF250 Azanefreezer. This air cooled, packaged unit incorporates twin screw compressors, air cooled condenser, electrical panel and reverse cycle defrost system inside a compact housing. This avoids the need for a new plant room and minimises installation time, with the package being installed on the roof of the existing refrigeration plant room.

    The high performance industrial freezer boasts a range of eco-friendly benefits, including the low ammonia charge requested by Brakes. Azanefreezer reduces Brakes existing ammonia system refrigerant charge from an estimated 5,000kg to just 188kg. 

    Alex Henderson, Key Account Manager - Food Market, says: “This reduction in charge, coupled with zero global warming potential, provided Brakes with the environmentally responsible solution they were looking for.”

    He adds: “As a natural refrigerant system, Brakes have invested in a long term solution that will be exempt from any future environmental legislation laws. With a 25 year life cycle when run at maximum operational performance, the system is a cost effective choice that will ensure Brakes produce stays fresh.”

    Modular, air cooled and incorporating a range of energy efficient features, the new system will help to reduce running costs as well as combat greenhouse gas emissions.

    Azanefreezer combines efficiency, reliability and unrivalled build quality, which will ensure Brakes continues to deliver its clients an unmatched level of service. The innovative modular design makes it efficient to relocate if necessary, thereby making it a cost effective option in a dynamic business. Also integrated into the system is an exclusive reverse cycle defrost function - currently the only system to offer this – which defrosts more efficiently as opposed to the alternative of installing electric heaters in the cooler.

    The upgraded system complies with European health and safety regulations and offers Brakes operators and management the peace of mind that they are working with premium quality equipment.

    Over the years, Star has built a strong working relationship with Brakes and is the food service supplier’s go-to solution for refrigeration upgrades, new built facilities and maintenance contracts across its UK plants.

    Ian Hunt, Brakes' Group Engineering Manager, said, “Star has a long history of installing and maintaining plants for Brakes. The Bishop’s Stortford Azanefreezer represents another successful collaboration and follows on from the recently completed distribution centre at Newhouse, Glasgow, which in turn followed on from Warrington last year and Reading before that.” 

  • Brakes Reading

    Brakes has invested in a bespoke cooling system from Star Refrigeration for its landmark multi-temperature distribution centre in Berkshire.

    Brakes recently established a state-of-the-art temperature controlled storage and distribution centre near Reading. Brakes is a leading supplier to the UK foodservice industry and the brand new purpose built facility forms part of the company’s continued drive for sustained growth.

    With an overriding commitment to reduce environmental impact, Brakes awarded the refrigeration contract to Star following a competitive tender process. A world leader in cooling and heating system innovation, Glasgow-based Star designed, supplied, installed and commissioned a bespoke refrigeration plant for cold and chill stores at the new facility.

    Star’s Director of Sales – Food Market, James Ward, says: “Energy efficiency and reduced carbon footprint were key factors in securing the cooling contract for the new Brakes facility in Reading. As well as offering a competitively priced bespoke system, we selected high quality components and built-in design features such as reverse cycle defrost and floating head pressure control, to maximise efficiency and significantly reduce energy consumption.”

    He adds: “Rising energy costs are putting increasing pressure on temperature controlled storage and distribution businesses. With refrigeration accounting for up to 80% of total energy consumption in warehouse facilities, plant design and efficiency is key to cost saving and energy management.”

    Star’s multi-temperature cooling system for Brakes comprises four LPR (low pressure receiver) refrigeration units. The packaged LPR plant has an ultra low charge of ammonia andis designed with energy saving features for highly efficient operation.

    The plant features two direct ammonia LPR systems, which supply cooling to a frozen food cold store (-21ºC) via four ceiling evaporators. Two ammonia/glycol chillers supply cooling to a chill store for meat products (+1ºC), a banana store (+13ºC) and vehicle loading bays via 13 ceiling mounted air coolers.

    Star has a long standing working relationship with Brakes, installing systems in depots across its UK network. As well as supplying cooling solutions for Brakes over many years, Star’s nationwide refrigeration engineering team continues to deliver planned, preventative maintenance support to ensure ongoing plant safety, reliability and efficiency.

    When it comes to designing and maintaining energy efficient cooling and heating systems, Star is a natural innovator. Star works with strategic cost saving solutions.